This is part of a report on NPR's "Morning Edition" today.
Something else that drives Republicans nuts about Obama is his mastery over foreign policy, which at one point "belonged" to Republicans, and his popularity abroad. He carries a lot of clout. An opportunity to discredit him before foreign leaders may be part of their motivation in dragging the entire country through another invented "crisis" -- this time about our prospective Secretary of State.
NPR: Another Republican senator, Bob Corker of Tennessee, spent an hour and a half with Rice to talk about his concerns. He calls Benghazi a tawdry affair, and says he's disappointed with everyone associated with it, including the intelligence community, which drew up Rice's talking points.
SENATOR BOB CORKER: I would just ask that the president step back away from all the buzz around this particular situation, and take a deep breath and decide who is the best secretary of state for our country at this time, when we have so many issues to deal with in the Middle East and other places.
NPR: He didn't make any suggestions, though Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts is said to be another leading contenders. Collins of Maine says Kerry, who is the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, would be as she put it: An excellent choice and would sail through a confirmation process.
The politics surrounding this baffles Aaron David Miller, vice president of the Woodrow Wilson Center.
AARON DAVID MILLER: Is it an effort to lay down a marker, in the wake of a second term victory to an empowered president that we can't be taken for granted? Is this an effort on the part of the Republicans to force Obama toward another choice, John Kerry, which would then open up another seat? I find some of this stuff not credible and I'm searching for a real explanation.
KELEMEN: Miller, who advised six secretaries of state, says he's never seen anything like this before. And he doubts President Obama will back down from a fight over a key national security position.
MILLER: Its no way to get started, in terms of image and credibility abroad; backing down in response to political pressures, because you were not prepared to fight hard enough for a secretary of state that you clearly have signaled is your first choice. And I think the president has done that.
NPR: And President Obama did so again at his latest Cabinet meeting.
(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Susan Rice is extraordinary. I couldn't be prouder of the job that she's done at USUN.
NPR: Leading Senate Democrats are also rallying around her. They will have a 55-45 advantage in the next Congress. Rice would need 60 votes to get confirmed. Very few secretaries of state have faced any opposition in past Senate votes.